Donald Trump calls for World Bank to halt all China lending

Donald Trump has called for the World Bank to stop lending money to China, a day after the institution adopted a lending plan to Beijing despite Washington’s objections.

The World Bank on Thursday adopted a plan to aid China with $1bn to $1.5bn in low-interest loans annually until 2025. The plan called for lending to “gradually decline” from the previous five-year average of $1.8bn.

Trump tweeted on Friday night: “Why is the World Bank loaning money to China? Can this be possible? China has plenty of money, and if they don’t, they create it. STOP!”

The White House and the World Bank did not immediately respond to requests for comment about Trump’s remark.

China envoy warns of ‘destructive forces’ trying to undermine US ties

The World Bank loaned China $1.3bn in the fiscal 2019 year, which ended on 30 June, a decrease from about $2.4bn in fiscal 2017.

But the fall in the World Bank’s loans to China is not swift enough for the Trump administration, which has argued that Beijing is too wealthy for international aid.

The past week has seen mounting concern that the US and China will not conclude an interim trade agreement before a new set of American tariffs hit Chinese goods on 15 December.

Trump told a Nato summit that he was in no hurry to sign an agreement before US elections in November. “In some ways it’s better to wait until after the election for the China deal. But they want to make a deal now,” he said, sparking heavy selling on global markets.

The relationship between the superpowers has been further strained by US legislation that aims to tackle Beijing’s repression of ethnic minorities in Xinjiang and human rights abuses in Hong Kong.

On Friday, China’s head of public security called for stronger cooperation with Hong Kong’s police, as pro-democracy protesters vowed to hold another massive rally over the weekend.

In a meeting with Hong Kong police chief Tang Ping-keung in Beijing, China’s public security minister, Zhao Kezhi, said: “The central government and public security ministry will always be a strong backup force for the Hong Kong police force.”

At Friday’s meeting, Tang thanked China’s public security bureau for its “vigorous support and help” and told Zhao that the city’s police force would “throw all of its energy” into stopping violence and unrest in Hong Kong.

The force’s reputation has suffered during the protests, with many accusing officers of brutality.

A new poll released on Friday by the Hong Kong Public Opinion Programme, which has tracked public sentiment for years, showed new record disapproval for the force with 40% of respondents now giving it the lowest mark of zero.

Hong Kong has been battered by six months of often violent protests pushing for greater democratic freedoms and police accountability in the most stark challenge the city has presented to Beijing since its 1997 handover.

Reuters and Agence France-Presse contributed to this report

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Liam Payne Accused of Disrespecting Bisexual in Song ‘Both Ways’

The former One Direction member comes under fire for singing about his desire to have threesome with bisexual women in one of his songs from new solo album ‘LP1’.

AceShowbiz -Former One Direction singer Liam Payne has been ripped online over the lyrics to his bisexual fantasy song, “Both Ways”.

The star released his debut album, “LP1”, on Friday, December 6 to largely poor reviews by music critics and fans alike, with listeners taking to social media to vent about their upset, prompting the hashtag #LiamPayneIsOverParty to become a trending topic on Twitter.

Many followers took issue with the lyrics to “Both Ways”, in which Liam sings about a threesome with two women, accusing the star of fetishising bisexuality.

One user wrote, “liam fetishizing bisexuality is not him coming to terms with his own sexuality. liam being crude, offensive and also corny when talking about sex is just gross. There’s nothing to salvage. He’s done #liampayneisoverparty”.

Another fumed, “nah you don’t get to fetishize bisexual girls and get profit off of it, we are not a sexual fantasy for straight men. im disgusted #liampayneisoverparty.”

“My girl, she like it both ways/Lovin’ the way that she’s turning you on/Nothing but luck that she got me involved, yeah/Sharing that body like it’s our last meal/One and a two and a three, that’s for real,” some of the track’s lyrics read.

“LP1” is the first solo album from Liam since his boy band One Direction announced an indefinite hiatus in 2016.

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Almost Half Of This Year's Sundance Films Feature Black Leads

While this year’s Oscars are on track to be the whitest in years, next year’s Sundance will look to tell a different story. According to Indiewire, the 2020 Sundance Film Festival will feature seven films in competition that primarily chronicle the lives of back characters. That’s a new festival record, by the way.

As Indiewire points out, the most such films that have ever played in competition in the same year was five. This year, the seven titles are The 40-Year-Old Version, Charm City Kings, Farewell Amor, Miss Juneteenth, Nine Days, Sylvie’s Love and Zola.

Festival founder, Robert Redford, seemed to address the diversity in a statement that was timed with Wednesday’s announcement of the upcoming Sundance lineup. “This year’s festival is full of films that showcase myriad ways for stories to drive change, across hearts, minds, and societies,” Redford said.

Other films of note include Dee Rees' adaptation of Joan Didion’s The Last Thing He Wanted, a film starring Anne Hathaway as a journalist who must reckon with her dying father's mistakes.

And how can we ignore Netflix’s ultra-buzzy Taylor Swift documentary Taylor Swift: Miss Americana, which is set to open Sundance on January 23. Directed by Lana the film promises to deliver a "raw and emotionally revealing look at one of the most iconic artists of our time." Swift has had a tumultuous year to say the least, and the doc is said to chronicle the "transformational period in her life as she learns to embrace her role not only as a songwriter and performer, but as a woman harnessing the full power of her voice."

Related: Can the Best Black Film at Sundance Really Be Made by White Men?

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The Shocking Reason Some Fans Actually Hate Baby Yoda

“Hating Baby Yoda? How can that be? That’s like hating Santa Claus!”

That might be the reaction many readers will have to the headline. But just when you thought there was something Star Wars fans could agree upon, just when you thought the rancor over The Last Jedi might start  ]to die down, someone has to go and say they don’t like Baby Yoda.

Unfortunately, as the old saying goes, you can’t please everybody. And this being Star Wars, even the breakout star of The Mandalorian doesn’t please everybody. 

Is it even right to call him ‘Baby Yoda’?

When Baby Yoda was revealed at the very end of the first episode of The Mandalorian, millions of voices  cried out “Awwwww!” Suddenly, the diminutive green guy became an even bigger hit than the Mandalorian himself. Baby Yoda is everywhere you turn. He’s arguably a hotter commodity than The Rise of Skywalker, which comes out December 19. Take, that, Emperor. 

And, as Star Wars fans do, they got pedantic right away. “You can’t call him ‘Baby Yoda!” they cried. This clearly isn’t Yoda because it takes place after Return of the Jedi when Yoda died! Yoda is his actual name, not the name of a species!”

Well, OK – but has the name of Yoda’s species ever been definitively established? Not in the movies, it hasn’t. We met him on Dagobah in Empire Strikes Back, but that’s not where he was from. 

Official canon has never identified Yoda’s species. Even the exhaustive site Wookiepedia has an inconclusive page on Yoda’s species, with a disclaimer reading, “Although this article is based on canonical information, the actual name of this subject is pure conjecture.”

“Baby Yoda” will have to do.

How could someone hate Baby Yoda? 

In a column titled “Love Baby Yoda, I cannot,” Jeremy Gordon writes that he thinks Disney has taken its trademark cuteness and extended it to Star Wars, where it doesn’t belong. He knows he’s fighting an uphill battle on this one, but he’s sticking to his blasters on saying no to Baby Yoda. He writes. 

“It’s the logical endpoint of a sinister company with decades of experience at tapping deeply into the human need to nurture something small and charming, literally designed in a lab to provoke devotion and love. Given The Mandalorian‘s adult pretensions, it’s not even like anyone can credibly claim this is for the kids, like the Ewoks and the Porgs and Jar-Jar. It’s for their parents, who signed up for the service in order for the cartoons, and the nerds, who refuse to graduate into more adult pleasures and also really love merchandise.”

He argues that if Baby Yoda is here, who’s to say we won’t also get Baby Chewbacca and Baby Darth Maul, and he has a point.

Disney is nothing if not a relentless merchandising machine, and the company has faced criticism for being too domineering over the entertainment industry, particularly after they eliminated one of their competitors, 20th Century Fox, by buying them. Ironically, it was Fox that took on Star Wars in 1977 after every studio in town, including Disney, rejected it. 

Nevertheless, Baby Yoda persists

No doubt detractors of Gordon’s column have replied to him with some variation of “I sense much fear in you. Fear leads to anger, anger leads to hate, hate leads to suffering.”  Clearly, the masses are not suffering Baby Yoda. Not only is he threatening to replace the “sipping tea” meme by Kermit the Frog, he’s even recalling an old toy controversy that dogged Star Wars in the 70s.

When Star Wars came out in 1977, it was widely expected that Star Wars toys would be a hot commodity at Christmas. However, the company that would manufacture the action figures and other toys, Kenner,  was unprepared for the intense demand. Instead of getting Star Wars toys for Christmas in 1977, kids got an “early bird certificate” placeholder that must have felt like a lump of coal.

Alas, something similar is happening with Baby Yoda. According to Time, Baby Yoda toys will not be available in time for Christmas because Disney didn’t want to reveal spoilers from The Mandalorian. If this isn’t a sign that spoiler culture has gone too far, nothing is. 

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TVLine Items: Finn Jones to Dickinson, Genius Season 3 First Look and More

Finn Jones is punching in for a new TV role: The former Iron Fist star has joined the previously announced second season of Dickinson, TVLine has learned.

Jones will appear in the Apple TV+ comedy as Samuel Bowles, an energetic and magnetic newspaper editor. Additionally, Pico Alexander (Catch-22) has been cast as Henry “Ship” Shipley, an Amherst College dropout who boards with the Dickinsons.

Dickinson stars Oscar nominee Hailee Steinfeld as an adolescent version of poet Emily Dickinson as she explores gender, sexuality and more in the 19th century. The entire first season is now available on Apple’s streaming service.

Ready for more of today’s newsy nuggets? Well…

* The first six seasons of Chicago Fire are now available to stream on the Amazon-owned VOD service IMDb TV, per our sister publication Variety. All five seasons of Friday Night Lights will also be available on the service as of Tuesday, Dec. 31.

* Nurse Jackie alum Paul Schulze will reunite with onetime co-star Edie Falco on Tommy, the upcoming CBS drama starring Falco as the LAPD’s first female chief of police. Per Deadline, Schulze will recur as Len Egan, a retired cop-turned-bestselling author who looks to Falco’s title character for help with a tough situation.

* HBO has given a series order to its as-yet-untitled drama chronicling the professional and personal lives of the 1980s Los Angeles Lakers, “one of sports’ most revered and dominant dynasties — a team that defined its era, both on and off the court.”

* Netflix on Friday announced a sequel to its 2018 holiday film The Christmas Chronicles. Kurt Russell (as Santa Claus) and Goldie Hawn (as Mrs. Claus) will be back for the next movie, which drops in 2020.

* Nat Geo has unveiled a first look at Genius‘ third season, in which Tony winner Cynthia Erivo will portray legendary singer Aretha Franklin. Scroll down for a glimpse of Erivo in character:

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How To Deal With The Pressure To Be In A Relationship Around The Holidays

In the same way that we know to harvest food for the winter, we know to harvest company, too. Though cuffing season might be a contemporary man-made notion, it comes from an innate desire; to support and be supported through the cold. Once the temperatures drop and we decorate the insides of our homes to look like twinkly wombs of comfort, it becomes harder to leave. The only thing better than being snowed in, is being snowed in with someone special, making it incredibly difficult to cope with relationship pressure around the holidays, especially. When you add in the social construct of holiday party plus ones and the fantastical holiday movie narratives that tells us that it isn’t Christmas unless there’s someone to kiss under the mistletoe, spending the winter alone becomes an insufferable concept.

But we’re not vulnerable cave dwellers, we’re self-sufficient adults with heating systems, delivery services, and weighted blankets for everything else. So why do so many of us put pressure on ourselves to ensure that the holidays are synonymous with festive romances? Bustle talked to Dr. Sanam Hafeez, a NYC neuropsychologist and faculty member at Columbia University about how to alter the way you think about holiday romances, and according to Hafeez, seeing through them is the first step.

"Virtually everything about the commercialization of the holiday season is designed to make people feel that there is an ideal way to celebrate and feel around the holiday season," Hafeez tells Bustle. We see it on the screen, we see it online, and according to Hafeez, even in seemingly innocuous holiday cards, where "families in crisis have their hair and makeup done with professional photographers to paint a perfect Norman Rockwell image." The message? The holidays are meant to be spent together.

Once we make it past Christmas, we have to confront New Years, which comes with its own brand of kisspectations. "The questions arise, ‘What are you doing? Where are you celebrating? Who are you celebrating with?’ If you ask most people privately and honestly, they will tell you, that that they don’t like New Year’s Eve, and that there is pressure to have forced fun," Hafeez says.

The reality is that a lot of people actually spend both holidays home, alone. But Hafeez says we shouldn’t feel bad for them. "This category of people are not the ‘loners’ many would imagine, they are often people secure with themselves," who just don’t want to deal with the chaos of holiday celebrations and all that it entails. "Then you have another category of both men and women who will start panicking around Thanksgiving and do anything to couple up so that they have somebody, anybody, to be with around the holiday and in particular, a ‘partner’ to kiss when the ball drops." The latter is a predicament that many of us have struggled with at least once in our lives.

"They place so much emphasis on that one night that it does not matter to them whether the person is toxic, a narcissist, abusive in some manner, or just wrong for them, it’s that being single for that one evening is a blow to their ego and sense of who they are." We’ve been there, but it’s not really our fault, when tradition and media puts so much emphasis on having someone to kiss or gift.

According to Hafeez, the only way to overcome the pressure to cuff yourself for the holidays is to reframe your thinking. "Work to understand that even though the holidays are times when many of us reflect and take stock of our lives, what happens on the holidays is not a prediction of how the rest of your life is going play out." Not to mention, if Instagram muted every ball-drop-kiss and instead promoted the posts of all the people around the world who have no one to kiss, the pressure would dissipate. "Think of the evening as a blip on the screen of your life — literally a few hours until morning comes and the rest of life returns to normal," Hafeez says.

You can’t rush or stretch love thin to cover the holidays. Rom-coms are scripted, Instagram is a highlight reel, and many couples that kiss under mistletoes argue the whole way home. If you’re feeling lonely or worried that you’ll reach for someone who doesn’t deserve you, reach for a friend instead. Healthy relationships and delicata squash don’t always mature at the same rate, so don’t try to harvest them at the same time.


Dr. Sanam Hafeez, a NYC Neuropsychologist and Faculty Member at Columbia University.

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How Old Are the Child Actors In 'Jojo Rabbit'? They Did An Adorable Q&A Together

The acclaimed satirical black comedy Jojo Rabbit has many unique features. Marvel director Taika Waititi wrote, directed, and stars in it as a version of Adolf Hitler who lives in the mind of the titular child. It also features a lot of other unique performances, including that of the young stars. Learn more about them here.

Roman Griffin Davis and Archie Yates are Jojo and Yorki

Roman Griffin Davis is Johannes “Jojo” Betzler. In the film, Jojo is a ten-year-old living in Germany as WWII winds down. Davis is a British actor, believed to be between 11 and 12 years old. Both of his parents are in the movie business — in fact, his dad has been the cinematographer for numerous Marvel films. Jojo Rabbit is his first movie.

Also getting their first gig with this film is Archie Yates. Like Davis, Yates was ten while the movie was filming in 2018. So he’s thought to also be around 11 years old. Yorki is Jojo’s best friend, who he attends the Hitler Youth camp with and remains in contact with throughout the film.

The actors have been involved in the press tour and promotion for the film, which is currently in theaters. However, they’ve done something a bit different now, on their own terms: A Q&A featuring just the two of them.

The weather on the set was difficult

When the boys were asked to sum up their experience in three words, it was fairly simple. Rather than reflecting on the exciting moments, they noted that they were particularly affected by the weather, describing the “boiling hot costumes” as the most notable aspect of filming.

Their characters all grown up

Davis and Yates answered another interesting fan question: What movie that’s already out would they like to be in? Davis said the ’80s classic Stand By Me. Yates, on the other hand, loves the ’90s comedy Ave Ventura: Pet Detective and Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls.

Another intriguing question involving their characters was what they think they each would have grown up to have as an occupation. Davis liked the fan’s suggestion that Jojo would continue with his art, while Yates thought maybe Yorki would become a consultant or an inventor.

He wasn’t the only Davis on set

Even if you’ve seen Jojo Rabbit, one thing you may not know is that Davis’ twin brothers are also in the film. A brief shot (as seen in the trailer) shows a bunch of Hitler Youth clones, played by the Davis twins (and computer-animated duplicates). Davis joked that it was “a pain” to have his brothers on set, but then amended this, saying it was “really nice” having them there.

As for their favorite characters in the film, Davis said that he likes Sam Rockwell‘s Captain Klenzendorf, who is undoubtedly a standout in an already wonderful cast. Yates, on the other hand, likes Jojo, calling him “really sweet and innocent.”

Meeting celebrities

Being child stars means you get to meet people you never expected. Yates says he was most excited to meet Scarlett Johansson, who plays Jojo’s mother, Rosie, at the U.S. premiere of the film. Davis, meanwhile, was delighted to meet director Quentin Tarantino.

Clearly, these two formed a bond with Waititi on set. When asked about his directing style, they joked that it was “plain” and “sloppy,” before getting serious. They said he was good at working with children and “showing innocence,” among other things.

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Kate Garraway drops sex bombshell as I’m A Celeb stars sip on boozy cocktails

I'm A Celeb's Kate Garraway made an unusual confession on tonight's episode, as she chatted about holiday cocktails.

Thanks to Roman Kemp and Andy Whyment, the campmates were treated to a cocktail after their dinner.

The two lads did their best to earn their pals some boozy beverages, answering quit questions while dunked in oil and guts.

Everyone started cheering when the boys broke the news, as Roman remarked: "Get it in you!"

Kate called out: "I want a pina colada!"

She added: "They did unbelievably – four stars, and a drink tonight!"

After a dinner of kangaroo tail, everyone settled by the fire to sip on their beverage of choice.

Margaritas, pina colada, and strawberry mojitos were on the menu – along with a Bacardi and coke for Andy.

They all toasted to their success, prompting Caitlyn Jenner to joke that Kate was about to get frisky in the cabin tonight.

Kate replied: "Actually a Pina Colada does make me frisky!"

More to follow…

The I'm A Celebrity…Get Me Out Of Here! final airs this weekend at 9pm on ITV.

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'The Batman' Cast Adds Peter Sarsgaard as…Well, We Don't Know

Thought we were done with The Batman casting? Think again. Matt Reeves has revealed that Peter Sarsgaard has joined the already stacked cast of his Batman reboot, but we don’t know who the actor playing. This is a sharp contrast to the other casting announcements from Reeves, which have all come accompanied with the character each respective actor is playing. So why the secrecy around Sarsgaard?

As you can see, Matt Reeves has revealed Peter Sarsgaard is now part of The Batman cast. Reeves has done this sort of post before for the other cast members, but he’s also mentioned their respective roles as well. See for yourself:

John Turturro as Carmine Falcone.

Andy Serkis as Alfred.

Paul Dano as Edward Nashton aka The Riddler.

— Matt Reeves (@mattreevesLA) June 3, 2019

Despite the lack of clarification from Reeves, we still know exactly who they’re playing: Pattinson is Batman and Kravitz is Catwoman. There is one main cast member who didn’t get a Reeves Tweet, and that’s Colin Farrel, who’s playing the Penguin. Newcomer Jayme Lawson is also part of the cast in an undisclosed role.

So…who is Peter Sarsgaard playing, and why isn’t Reeves saying? I suppose there’s a chance Peter Sarsgaard is playing a brand new character named Peter…but, I doubt it. If I had to guess, I’d say Sarsgaard is going to play Harvey Dent, aka Two-Face. But again, I have no idea why Reeves would want to keep that a secret. Perhaps it’s to disguise the movie’s potential plot. Rumors have persisted that Reeves is using the Batman comic The Long Halloween as inspiration, and Harvey Dent is a major character in that work.

It would be slightly ironic if Sarsgaard really was playing Harvey Dent, because Sarsgaard’s real-life wife Maggie Gyllenhaal played Harvey Dent’s girlfriend Rachel Dawes in The Dark Knight. THR adds that “sources speculate he could be playing a corrupt cop named Wasserman or a district attorney.” No idea who “Wasserman” could be, but if the “district attorney” rumor is correct, that would definitely make him Harvey Dent.

The Batman opens on June 25, 2021.


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Why Liam Payne Is Facing Major Backlash for His New Song ''Both Ways''

David x Prutting/

If you’re wondering why #LiamPayneIsOverParty is trending on Twitter, you came to the right place.

Long story short, Liam Payne released his new song “Both Ways” and people are pretty outraged by the sexual lyrics, which reveal his girlfriend might be bisexual. For example, he sings, “My girl, she like it both ways/She like the way it all taste/Couple more, we’ll call it foreplay.”

This, of course, doesn’t sit right with the LGBTQ+ community and other individuals, who accuse the singer of “fetishizing” people’s sexual identity. “the lgbqt+ community is NOT for your fetish. to see young women, men, or ANYONE being sexualized like that is disgusting,” one tweet, which has garnered over 2,000 likes, declared. 

Another Twitter user added, “I’m disgusted how straight people still think bi women (and bi people in general) are only worth your sex fantasies.”

Even the famous YouTuber Tyler Oakley weighed in on the controversy, although his comments were a bit more cryptic. He tweeted, “bitch, I warned y’all years ago! Lmao #LiamPayneIsOverParty.” In just two hours, over 10,000 people have liked the tweet.

Unfortunately, the subject matter of the song has also led to people resurfacing comments that Liam once made about his One Direction band mate Harry Styles, an LGBTQ+ ally. During an interview, the father-of-one said he wouldn’t let Harry babysit his son Bear, because he was unsure of the influence it would have on the baby. “I couldn’t rely on Harry ’cause I feel like my child would come out dressed in something that I just wouldn’t understand,” Payne explained.

It seemed like it was all in jest, because Harry wasn’t the only one Liam seemingly insulted. He also said that if he had to choose a babysitter out of the One Direction group, Louis Tomlinsonwould be his “last choice.”

Liam himself has yet to address the comments, but he seems excited to release his debut album. On Twitter, he shared, “Blown away by this reaction already! Thanks to everyone that’s picked up the album so far, your support doesn’t go unnoticed.”

E! News has reached out to Liam’s reps for comment.

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